There were some cracking matches across the UK for our women’s squads this weekend in prep for a demanding Masters season ahead. All Scottish sides took on select teams from Yorkshire North East Hockey and North West Hockey.
The Scottish ‘youngsters’ – the W35, W40 and W45s – were based at Peffermill Playing Fields in Edinburgh.
The W35s had a mix of results, drawing one, losing two and ending the weekend on a high with a win, a Kareema Hilton deflection the difference.
The W40s enjoyed plenty of possession and good play with their time on the pitch. Two losses on Saturday were bettered the next day with a 1-1 draw and 0-2 loss to Yorkshire North East.
Constant improvement saw the W45s unbeaten. After drawing the first match with Yorkshire 0-0, they eventually overcame North East 2-1, Sheona Hutchison netting her first Scotland goal. A shuffle of the pack on day two brought better results, with convincing 3-0 and 3-1 victories, with new addition Katharine Descamps scoring one in each game.
Meanwhile, in Durham and Newcastle…
The W50s had a 2-1 win against North West before a 0-1 loss to Yorkshire North East on Saturday. They had a repeat of results on Sunday, winning 2-0 then losing again 0-1. Co-captain Cath Stirling said: “Great weekend as a squad where we learnt a lot on the pitch. Looking forward to the GB&I 4 Nations now.”
There were goals galore all weekend for the winning W55s, with a whopping 6-0 victory in their first match, followed by a more modest 1-0 win. Taking the opportunity to try various positions on the pitch paid off on Sunday with and the same number of goals, this time with a 3-0 and 4-0 win.
The W60s went on a goalscoring spree, out 2-1 on top against North West before beating Yorkshire North East 3-0. Sunday saw 4-1 and 6-1 wins over the same teams. Top scorer Pat Lindsay was on fire with a fantastic four over the weekend, with a total of nine scorers across the weekend .
Finally, experimentation was the name of the game for the W65s. Coach Ellen Murray turned the team on its head – with defenders playing in attack and vice versa – as they played Yorkshire North East twice. Their 2-3 loss on Saturday was ‘upgraded’ to a 1-1 draw in the Sunday.
For all squads the weekend provided the opportunity to indulge their coaches’ ideas and try out different approaches. All agree it was a worthwhile step in the 2023 season.
Scottish Masters Hockey would like to thank all opponents, supporters, organisers and officials for happy hockey.